Find more information about

at the Center for Jewish History:

NOTE: you will be redirected
to the Web site for the

Mincs, Vladimirs

(Mintz; 1872–1945), surgeon. Vladimirs Mincs’s father, Jehil Mikelis Mincs, moved to Riga from Daugavpils. Vladimir and his brother Pauls became prominent figures in Latvia and its Jewish community.

Mincs graduated from Tartu University in Estonia in 1895 and spent a year training as a physician in Germany. He then worked at the surgery clinics of Moscow University Hospital, and during World War I was head of the surgery department of Moscow’s main hospital. Mincs became a professor at Moscow University in 1917 and headed the city’s clinics between 1918 and 1920. In 1918, he operated successfully on Lenin after the attempt on the latter’s life by Fannie Kaplan. With Lenin’s aid, Mincs was permitted to return to Riga in 1920, where from 1924 he was in charge of the surgical department of the Jewish hospital, Bikur-Holim. In 1940–1941, he directed the surgery department at the Latvian State University’s clinics.

As a founder of the modern Russian and Latvian schools of surgery, Mincs published more than 100 articles and books on neurosurgery, plastic surgery, orthopedics, gynecology, urology, and oncology. After the Nazi invasion, in 1941–1943 he was in the Riga ghetto, where he was in charge of the hospital. He was deported to Buchenwald in 1944, and died there in 1945.

Suggested Reading

Grigorii Smirin, Vydaiushchiesia evrei latvii, ed. Maija Šetlere (Riga, 2003); archival materials on Vladimirs Mincs are housed in Muzejs un Dokumentacijas Centrs “Ebreji Latvija,” Riga, Latvia.